While engaged in some design decisions with our builder (and friend), Matt (www.howlingdogconstruction.wordpress.com), he quite aptly declared, “The only tiny thing about a tiny house is the size!” There was a brief pause, and then we all laughed out loud at the seeming veracity of that simple statement.
As we noted in a prior blog, the design process has taken much longer than originally planned and has been filled with all sorts of unforeseen decisions pertaining to building tiny. We have made countless decisions: about stairs and whether or not we can have them; about windows and their quality and how they should best open and how well insulated they are; about siding and whether or not the shingles we love would stay attached under driving and fierce weather conditions; about rooflines and roofing; about what room goes where and what goes into the rooms and what the doors should be made of, and on and on and on. At this point we are quite sure that the overall timeline for building and completion of Tiny will continue to expand over the months ahead. And the budget for our tiny home also continues to grow! Oddly enough, it turns out that things that are smaller than the “standard” are typically much more expensive (e.g. appliances). Yet, we committed to ourselves that we were going to love what we were creating and not make compromises that we would later regret. So it’s a balancing act between what we can dream and what makes good sense for who and where we are now in our lives.
Also BIG has been preparing to live tiny. This isn’t a new thing for either of us, as we have lived in tents and in other very small homes. But each of these ventures has called out different aspects of ourselves. We think that consideration of the roadworthiness of a tiny house on wheels has been significant this time. We decided not to go with the park model size as doing so would require oversize load permits and extra vehicles whenever we move it (i.e. much more expensive to move!). The requirements to legally pull our own tiny home on the roads in North America (with the help of friends who own pickup trucks!) are that the vehicle cannot be more than 8.5 feet wide and 13.5 feet high (and 40 feet in length!!). Ours will be 8.5 ft. wide x 13.5 ft. tall x 25 ft. long. And that’s the outside! Once the walls are built, and insulation put in, we are looking at an inside space closer to 6’11 wide by 24 long. As a result, we just figured out that the opening of the standard refrigerator door can’t happen in our kitchen! (And considering the amount of raw food we eat these days, a good size refrigerator is on the proprity list!)
Once completed, of course, there will be more tiny aspects to Tiny — like our monthly overhead! Phew… Looking forward to enjoying and learning a ton from the continuing process!